Thieves targeting businesses in Lakeview and Lincoln Park

Chicago police are looking into a wave of North Side business burglaries in the Lake View and Lincoln Park neighborhoods.

According to a 19th District police alert, incidents took place in the:

-- 2900-block of North Broadway at around 3:45 a.m. on Nov. 21.
-- 2500-block of North Clark at around 3:25 a.m. on Nov. 27.
-- 3200-block of North Sheffield between Nov. 28 and Nov. 29.
-- 3800-block of North Southport at around 2:45 a.m. pm Nov. 30.
-- 700-block of West Fullerton between midnight and 9:45 a.m. pm Dec. 3.

-- 2400-block of North Lincoln between 3:30 a.m. and 8:45 a.m. on Dec. 3.

CPD says businesses were entered though front or rear doors or through a skylight. That appears to be what happened at Philly Bros on West Fullerton early Monday.

"Our cook was here until about 12 or 1 o'clock, and it just happened at 1:20, I think," said manager Andrew DeJesus.

A security camera recorded footage of the thief breaking in through a skylight on the roof. Minutes later, the robber was seen on video escaping through a window after taking cash from a register.

"Took $200 and skedaddled out of the window," DeJesus said.

According to CPD data, there has been an increase in burglaries in the 19th district. While some business owners blame a lack of police presence, Maureen Martino, executive director of the Lakeview East Chamber of Commerce, noted that the problem is a citywide one.

She also said business owners need to be more careful especially during the holidays.

"Take that extra step at the end of the night. Make sure everything is secured, your cameras are on, your alarm. Don't leave a lot of money in the register," Martino said.

CPD suggests that business owners have a properly maintained and working surveillance system. They should also pay attention to suspicious people loitering in the area. If an incident occurs, call 911 immediately and provide details including a description of the offenders, a vehicle description and license plate information.

Anyone with any information about the burglaries is asked to call the CPD's Area North Bureau of Detectives at 312-744-2863.
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